Dessert Allison Style

Every so often we have a special dessert night where we have strawberries and chocolate. This is a big family favorite.

We learned long ago to let the kids sit on the table for this treat. It goes a long way to controlling the mess. But not quite far enough.

The other night Christine and I got our signals crossed and I got Allison changed for bed a little to soon. This video of Allison in her brand new pajamas shows the result.

Conner The Boxer

Conner tried out the heavy bag at a friends house this weekend. Christine caught this video.

Nothing Says You're Traveling Too Much Like A Lincoln Navigator

I've been traveling a lot lately. Tuesday I traveled 10 hours from North Carolina, through Chicago, to see this out our window as we were landing in California.


This was taken from my iPhone. Objects in an iPhone picture are closer than they appear. There were audible gasps from people on the plane and one woman shrieked. The planes keep getting closer as we came in for a landing.  A little scary, but we lived...

One of the things about business travel is the more you do it the more "perks" they give you.  And perks usually means bigger; more leg room, a higher floor in the hotel, extra coffee in your cup. These things are better and you are expected to want them because you deserve them... Or something.

Having survived a synchronized landing with the other plane I made my way to the Hertz car rental place and walked straight down to the cars.  As a "Gold Member" one of the perks is I don't have to talk to anyone at Hertz; I just walk out to my car and drive away.

As I'm making my way to my car I notice several big bright green signs. $15 off if I get a hybrid car.  In the back of my travel weary head I'm thinking, "Boy that would be kind of cool, I'd like to try out a hybrid car! I always request a small car, maybe I'll get one of those."

Not so much. Hertz rewarded me with the most ridiculous single personal transport vehicle since the IT (South Park).


Don't be fooled by the fact that I got the entire thing in frame. That thing that looks like a bush next to it is actually a small tree.

When you open the front door a motor whirls and a step slides out from under the car.  The first time I got in I didn't notice the step and had to jump to get in the car. Once you get used to the step it's kind of like using a stirrup to mount a horse. It has a radio with more buttons than the control room for the Apollo missions, seating for 7 and something like 37 cup holders.

I drove 30 minutes from the airport to the hotel and used 1/8 a tank of gas. The next 1/8 of a tank disappeared as I drove to the outskirts of the hotel's parking lot because the hotel is surrounded by compact car only parking.

I grabbed my bags (one gym bag and a computer backpack) and hiked back past all the compact car parking to the hotel check-in desk.  The nice lady at the front desk explained that because I was such a good customer I had been upgraded to a suite.  Merde...

At this point I had been awake for something like 22 hours and  "Upgrade" meant that I could not take the elevator up to a room and simply pass out. Because I was such a valued guest I had to hike back to my shunned upgrade of a car, and navigate around the hotel complex to the suites.

"Are you serious?" I asked. She smiled as if giving me a great gift and said "Absolutely! There's even an assigned parking spot for you there! Enjoy your stay!"

As I backed out of my spot at the outskirts of the hotel parking lot I discovered that there was a rear view camera in the mirror of my car.


Even in my exhausted state this was pretty impressive. If Joseph Hazelwood had one of these, maybe he wouldn't have crashed.

After a little hunting I found my assigned parking spot. A covered spot that would have fit my Civic nicely. As I pulled into it I was introduced to another brilliant feature of the Lincoln Navigator.


I can only assume they sell airplane hangers with each purchase of a Navigator because there was no way to park my upgraded car in my upgraded parking space without being audibly assaulted by proximity alarms.

The next morning I enjoyed a nice view from the balcony of my upgraded suite.  It was pretty for a minute, then I headed out the door to 15 hours of meetings.


And so it was that I had been perked and upgraded.  I'm home now and much the happier for it.

A Biblical iPad Teaching Moment

Sunday morning, after the Easter egg hunt, resulting candy buffet and lego building event (yes the Easter bunny brought legos), the boys were off playing on their own so I settled down on the couch to read the news and play with my new iPad.

For the record, there was a small chance I could have made it out of the Apple store without an iPad. Fortunately Christine was there to smother what little remained of that practical voice in my head. I have a very cool wife.

So there I was sitting on the couch looking at a website called The Brick Testament.

The Brick Testament is the largest, most comprehensive illustrated Bible in the world with over 3,600 illustrations that retell more than 400 stories from The Bible. - TBT FAQ.

And all those illustrations are made out of legos. It looks spectacular!

The brick testament on the ipad

I'm a big fan of this website because it makes the stories of the bible so accessible. I've been trying to figure out a way to teach the kids religious literacy because:

  1. I think it's important to understand the stories used as the basis for world religions.
  2. When nutters start quoting holy books and claiming those books unequivocally tell us we need to hurt or repress each other, it's useful to have a passing familiarity with those books so you can either ignore, debate or educate the nutters as you fit.

So there i was sitting on the couch looking at this website when Conner came over and following transpired.

Conner - Daddy what is that?
Me - It's the Bible. A book of religious stories.

At this point Conner looked really interested and I started getting excited that teaching my kids religious literacy was going to be easier than I thought. Then Conner, as he is want to do, brought me back to reality.

Conner - [In a very excited voice] I WANT TO BUILD THE BIBLE!!!


We didn't build the bible that morning, but we did read through a good bit of Genesis. Unfortunately, Genesis doesn't paint the nicest picture of Yahweh. Conner was irked but accepting of Yahweh throwing Adam and Eve out of the garden of Eden. He said they broke the rules and were being punished.

But, by the time we got to Cane and Able, with Yahweh demanding the sacrifice of animals and basically instigating a fight between the brothers, Conner had changed his mind. He actually asked me "Is Yahweh the bad guy in this story?"

I'm starting to think I picked the wrong first subject area. Physics might have been a lot easier.

Alex's First Time Batting

Tonight Alex walked up to me with a bat and ball and asked me to "throw" to him. He's never batted before and he lined up lefty. I tried to get him to hit righty but he insisted on staying the way he was.

And this is what happened...

Video of Alex's First Time Batting